Saturday, January 6, 2024

Fish Wellington

Same as for Beef Wellington, except use a firm-fleshed white fish instead, something like cod or halibut. The fish goes into the pastry uncooked and will cook in the oven.

Beef Wellington

Sear either a beef tenderloin or individual steaks - they will continue to cook in the oven so you don't want them fully cooked at this stage.

Roll out puff pastry.

Fry a finely-chopped onion and some finely-chopped mushrooms. When cooked, stir in some smooth pate, then a dollop of cream and mix thoroughly. When the mixture has cooled, spread onto the middle of the pastry and set the beef on top. Fold the pastry over to make a parcel (or individual parcels), and bake until the pastry is puffed up and browned.

Saturday, November 5, 2022

Potato gratin

We like trying a new spin on potatoes every once in a while, and this random discovery was an all-round hit. In some ways it's similar to Duphinoise potatoes, but a lot richer. It does take a lot more preparation though, but if you have the time, the effort is worth it.

Cube and boil potatoes in salted water for a few minutes. They should be slightly tender but not too soft.

Saute a couple of diced shallots and minced garlic in butter until tender.

Stir in a spoonful of flour and cook for a minute, stirring to stop it catching on the pan. Stir in a couple of cups of chicken stock then cream to make a moderately thick sauce. Simmer for a few minutes stirring constantly.

Stir in a generous handful of cheese, a squirt of mustard, and season with salt and pepper. Finally stir in the drained potatoes.

Spread the mixture into a greased baking pan and bake for up to an hour. Sprinkle another handful of grated cheese and chopped chives or green onions on top and either return to bake or put under the grill to brown.

Thursday, October 6, 2022

Pitta wraps

When we want a change from regular wraps (tacos, fajitas etc.) pitta makes a nice change with a Greek twist rather than Mexican.

Warm some pittas in the oven to make them more flexible. Spread a spoonful of tzatziki, then salad and meat, and roll it up. Eat with care  :)

For salads, you we use thinly sliced cucumber, pepper, tomato, onion, olives, and shredded lettuce.

For meat, a favourite is lamb sausages, fried then thinly sliced.

Sunday, July 3, 2022

Sweet and sour sauce

 A very tasty home-made sauce. For once I'll include quantities to get the balance of flavours right.

Blend together: 2 tbsp vinegar, 1/2 tbsp corn starch, 1/2 tbsp ketchup, 1 grated onion, 1/2 tbsp soy sauce, 1 tbsp sugar, 2 tsp oil.

Drain the juice from a can of pineapple chunks into a saucepan and stir in the blended ingredients. Bring to the boil and cook for 5 minutes until the sauce thickens. Stir in the pineapple.

Tuesday, February 22, 2022

Braised lamb in red wine

A really tasty and heartwarming dish.

Sear a leg of lamb or lamb shanks until browned. Place in a casserole dish.

Saute a chopped onion in butter until golden. Add chopped carrots and garlic. Add tomato paste and stir until the vegetables are coated. Pour in 2 cups of stock, a can of tomatoes, and a cup of red wine. Bring to the boil, then add everything to the casserole dish.

Place in the oven and cook for at least 2 hours. Longer if it's a big piece of meat. This dish can go long and slow for ages until the lamb falls off the bone.

Good with mashed potatoes.

Thursday, August 26, 2021

Cornish pasties

This is a tasty and filling meal for a winter's day.

For the filling, blanch some finely-diced carrots, potatoes and swede, and drain. The veggies should be cut into small pieces - about 1/2" or 1cm in size.

Fry a finely-chopped onion and garlic until golden, and add ground beef (or turkey, or lamb) and fry until browned. Overall, you want roughly the same amount of meat as you have veggies. Stir in the cooked veg, and a good dollop of brown sauce, and leave to cool.

Mix some shortcrust pastry dough, roll it out fairly thin and cut into circles (using a side plate as a template will give you a good size.)

Brush the edge of each circle with milk, spoon some of the filling into the centre, fold over to make a parcel and crimp the edge. Brush the outside with milk and pop into the oven on a baking tray for about 40 minutes, until the pastry has browned.